Strength vs Strength

“…for when I am weak in human strength, then am I truly strong able, powerful in divine strength.”
(2 Corinthians 12:10, AMP)

Part I of same verse? “So for the sake of Christ, I am well pleased and take pleasure in infirmities, insults, hardships, persecutions, perplexities and distresses;…”

“…for when I am weak in human strength, then am I truly strong able, powerful in divine strength.”

Hey All, this puzzles me. I mean the first part, ‘well pleased and take pleasure in???’….

And, take a look at vs. 11….”Now I have been [speaking like] a fool! But you forced me to it,…”

The Apostle Paul has given us an excellent rendering of God’s Grace!

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14 thoughts on “Strength vs Strength

  1. We know God is our strength and that we are weak. Perhaps it is like a baby beginning to walk. We begin by crawling, scooting, and then holding on to something be it parents hand or piece of furniture. We fall and do it again until we are walking and then running. Perhaps just like the physical walking it out we spiritually have to walk with God. We know he knows the journey and can carry and maneuver us through any situation that we face. We take the small steps of faith (crawling, begging, scooting) and gradually are able to walk in those areas of life that require greater amounts of faith. God is there holding hands if we take the first step to reach out to HIM. God the Father is pleased when we call out to him and He leads us through the steps to victory – growth in our inner being. God takes pleasure in helping us. We take pleasure in our growing closer to the Father and that growth He gives will come from anything that comes our way because He is in it with us. Seems that God uses all circumstances to grow us up on the inside and outside. Of course our walk of faith like physically beginning to walk has some pain, strengthening and stretching the muscles of our walk.

  2. When I see infirmities, insults, hardships, persecutions, perplexities and distresses
    coming my way, I say good, God is going to be doing something good and Satan doesn’t like. Of course it doesn’t mean these are easy things to go through, but you know God is there with you so hang on to God as you take the wild ‘toad’ ride.

  3. Rena, I think this passage explains your comments…..
    “Yes,” Jesus replied, “and I assure you that everyone who has given up house or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or property, for my sake and for the Good News,will receive now in return a hundred times as many houses, brothers, sisters, mothers, children, and property–along with persecution. And in the world to come that person will have eternal life.” Mark 10:29-30 NLT

  4. A person wrote in the QUESTION & ANSWER column of the Moody Daily Devotional, “My life is very hard. None of my prayers get answered. Does God have it in for me?” The wise radio pastor Dr. Cole answered with Scripture by leading the inquirer to Ps. 56. Pastor Cole wrote, “Read the Psalm and ponder its account of terror and affliction (the horror of a constantly threatened life and pursuit by a murderer). Then read again the author’s affirmations of confidence in God, especially focusing on verse 9. “This I know that GOD IS FOR ME.” We followers of Jesus Christ can be sure of His unfailing love. And He Who said He would never leave us or forsake us can be trusted to not just be WITH US but to be ON OUR SIDE.”
    We don’t need to write out all of the those who suffered throughout the Bible”, writes Pastor Cole.

    Then I thought of Job, Joseph, Daniel, Stephen, Paul and all the martyrs…centuries of godly sufferers “who in their darkest hours never truly stopped believing that God was with them” and for them and in them and would bring them through either on this earth, as in the Scriptures in Mark 10:29-30 or in eternity which is far, far better.

  5. Reading vs 9, God said “My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness.” (NLT). Paul must have experinced this power first hand in order to be able to really say he is ‘well pleased and takes pleasure in’. Reading on to vs 12…he said he gave them ‘proof’ of this power that he was an apostle throught the miracles, signs and wonders he did. So he must have learned to define his pleasure by how much God got His way to come through him in his weakness.

  6. That is true. The more God can work through us by His power, the less and less of our (so-called) power is evident and HIS increase is readily seen in us…i.e. John the Baptist…I must decrease and HE must increase. The more we yield to His power, the less room there is for “self”.

  7. Sara, I’m with you on…perplexed about taking pleasure in hardships, etc. I don’t like to go through hardships, distresses, etc. either. From reading the above blog and comments, I am gathering that these hard times, in life, is when God’s power is perfect? Or maybe God is building character in us? Am I getting the point?

  8. Relating to vs 10: at times when I am setting out to accomplish a task that I know the Lord wants me to do that requires energy and strength, I find I just don’t seem to have it. If I sit and wait for it, I still don’t get it. But when I get up and go, believing He told me to, placing one foot in front of the other, His strength comes in as I go and enables me. To me that is a part of experiencing His gracious grace and mercy.

  9. This morning as I was reading Judges 7 Gideon was told by the Lord, Verse 2, “The people who are with you are too many for Me to give the Midianites into their hands, lest Israel claim glory for itself against Me, saying, My own hand has saved me. In order to get the numbers down the first thing the Lord did was those who were fearful and afraid had to go home so 22,000 left.
    10,000 remained. 2nd test – the Lord said, Verse 4, “The people are still too many; bring them down to the water, and I will test them for you there. Verse 5 He said whoever laps from the water with his tongue, as a dog laps, you shall set apart by himself; likewise everyone who gets down on his knees to drink.” There were 300 men who lapped like a dog and the rest got on their knees to drink water. He then told Gideon he would use the 300. The three hundred where broke into three companies. They were instructed to stand around the camp. Verse 20 Then the three companies blew the trumpets and broke the pitchers – they held the torches in their left hand and the trumpets in their right hand for blowing – and they cried, “The sword of the Lord and of Gideon!” 21 And every man stood in his place all around the camp; the the whole army ran and cried out and fled. 22. When the three hundred blew the trumpets, the Lord set every man’s sword against his companion throughout the whole camp; and the army fled….

    Thinking about this – how could it apply to us. They were facing an enemy as we often do in our lives.
    1. Lord sent the ones home who were fearful and afraid, which were a lot. Fear is not of the Lord so nothing can be done? Is that right?
    2. Next he instructed the rest to go down to drink water. The Holy Spirit had to
    give them the leading of how to drink. They had to hear and do what the Spirit said. (Listen and hear what had to be done.)
    3. The 300 who heard the Spirit say lap the water up as a dog were obedient to the Holy Spirit and thus were given further instructions. (Can’t do your thing to be affective, must listen to God and do it even if it doesn’t set well with you.)
    4. They had to then listen to the Holy Spirit/God’s instructions – Stand around the camp, smash the pitcher, hold your torch in the left hand, and the trumpet in your right hand. (Obedience)
    5. Wait and see what the Lord can do against the enemy. (Having done all – WAIT)
    6. Lord given the praise. (Sing praises to God for what He has done!)

    Sounds like God’s strength and power is all we need. God wants to help! All we have to do is not be afraid, listen to the Holy Spirit’s instructions, Do what the Lord Instructs, Wait and then Praise God as we see the enemy fall! Sounds easy, but I for one miss it too often! I want to soon sing the song, Victory oh victory is mine!

  10. From Gideon’s account looks like God has some very creative and innovative methods of accomplishing His purposes and showing His mighty power that don’t fit into our narrow mental perspectives of how to do things. Guess that may be why we try to rationalize things, figure it out, do it in our own strength…then we find out that didn’t work and God knew best.

  11. Seems as if fear and anxiety throws you off the team from the get go! And to so many of us fear and stress finds a way to abide with us.

  12. It seems fear is a Blood-pressure raiser. Fear of man; fear of failure; fear of poverty;fear of making a mistake; fear of competition; fear of hard labor 🙂
    You are right Sara. We allow fear a guest room in our minds but Paul says we have not been given a spirit of fear but of love, POWER and a strong mind. But unfortunately, some of us think he meant HEAD-STRONG.

  13. Many times we are being tested by God and not even aware that if we pass we might take center stage. We don’t even show up for the test. Then we complain and give all kinds of useless hair brained ideas why God does not use us.

    Wonder if the men asked to drink water knew they were beIng tested for a big promotion!

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